Organic Food (with a side of nepotism) - Our Daily Green

Friday, June 10, 2011

Organic Food (with a side of nepotism)

A few weeks ago, I shared a persuasive essay my 15 year old wrote. Her 13 year old sister had also written a paper, but didn't receive it back until the end of the school year so I had to postpone sharing her work. (Either that or the older one is my favorite!) Just kidding, sweetie, I like you better. But your sister is my favorite. (see how diplomatic that was?)

Eating healthy and locally is truly a family affair in Our Daily Green's home. We rarely have processed junk food, we like farm markets, we go to food shows, we enjoy eating and we make healthy choices. It was no surprise to me that both children chose similar topics for their separate essays. Especially when they regularly have to endure my pontifications. 

I am honored to introduce my daughter as today's guest blogger, featuring an editorial from her 7th grade English class. This is the Internet equivalent of posting it on a refrigerator. Thank you in advance for oohing and ahhing. 

organic food
image from: Tiki World
"Yes, I'd like an extra large hamburger with fries."

Is it even close to believable that when the person at the cash register goes and grabs that order; they are getting it from a farm in the back of the fast food restaurant? The truth is they are getting their food from factory farms coming to that restaurant from all over the United States. People should eat organic food' it is better for their healthy and local farms.

If people start to eat organic food, imagine what would happen. It could help all those organic, grass-fed livestock farms. If those farms are supported, more money stays local, which means better local economy. Also, there will be less money going to corporate big-box industrial farms. That means less money going overseas, which also will contribute to a better economy in the whole country.

Think about the treatment of animals on the industrial farms. It is very hard to conceive that each animal is cared for individually and treated well. Actually, they are fed with corn because it is cheaper, but cows are not able to digest corn correctly. They are supposed to eat grass. Since they do not digest the corn properly, this can lead to an E. coli outbreak, endangering everyone who might eat one of the cows that was diseased. The chickens on these industrial farms are fed with arsenic laced food to make their breasts grow faster. This is because the chicken breast is the most popular part of the chicken, and industrial farms want to produce as much of it as they can so the big-box farms can make more money. But, since the chickens grow unnaturally fast, they are not able to stand. Since they are not able to stand, they lay in their feces all day, contaminating their eggs, and giving them unhealthy infections, that might be carried to a person who eats one of those chickens. Also, all these animals are locked in dark, dirty barns. This has proven to significantly decrease the Vitamin D in the eggs of the hens.  (as of this writing the arsenic laced food has been banned two days ago
grass fed beef

In organic food, there are fewer chemicals. It was mentioned in the previous paragraph that the animals are given doses of hormones and steroids to make the popular parts in them grow bigger in a smaller amount of time. Some of the cuts of meat they affect are sirloins and chicken breasts. Also, organic fruit has fewer chemicals in and on it, too. A regular apple that is sold at a supermarket has an average of 30 pesticides on it, even after it is washed. Organic livestock and crops are raised with little or no synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, or artificial chemicals. Organic farmers usually use compost as a fertilizer and rely on natural predators to control pests.

It is understandable that factory farmed livestock and crops are cheaper. This is because they grow the food in such unnatural ways, they have lot of supply, enough to satisfy the demand, and keep it at a good price. The average price for a pound of factory farmed ground beef is $2.49. The average price for a pound of organic ground beef is $3.76. Organic beef is more expensive, but extra money brings quality. If it is possible to spare the extra dollar, it will really pay off in the long run. An organically raised animal consumed by someone had a happy, healthy life. It was not raised in a dark barn, full of hormones, and the animal would be able to hold its own weight since it was grown naturally.

Organic food is so much better for your health than commercially produced food. Think about it. The factory farm animals are injected with hormones and steroids. This has been causing children to go through puberty and mature much earlier. Their bodies are not used to the extra hormones at such a fast rate, so just like animals, the children are becoming young adults at an earlier age. The Center for Disease Control estimates that 23% of American children are overweight. It is believed to be mostly because of the growing fast food industry. Also, there is an average of 10,000 cows in the concoction of one fast food hamburger. If one of those cows had E. coli, consumers have a huge chance of getting one of the tainted burgers, which could threaten their life. Remember those thirty pesticides on that apple? Those pesticides have been shown to cause cancer, obesity, Alzheimer's, and some birth defects. With that at stake, does anyone really want to eat factory farmed crops and livestock?

Envision an organic livestock farm. The chickens are running around in the sunshine, not lying in their feces. The apples are apples. They are not tainted with chemicals; they are fertilized with compost and protected by nature. The cows are grazing on long, lush grass, not corn. In those factory farms, there are no chickens running around or cows grazing on grass in the sun. The apples have a lovely coating of pesticides and the livestock is infected from feces and full of drugs.

Now, is it more convincing that organic should be the food people eat?
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